The Blu-ray release of Avatar last week was expected to do well, very well. And just like the movie box office, the results surprised everyone while on the way to shattering every previous record. To put it in perspective, the previous first-day sales record for a Blu-ray release belonged to The Dark Knight, which sold 600,000 copies. Avatar sold over 1.2 million on its first day, doubling the previous record. But it didn’t stop there. Dark Knight went on to hold the record for most Blu-ray discs sold at 2.5 million since its release in December of 2008, 16 months ago. Avatar has sold 2.7 million since its release last Thursday. It has also done phenomenally well selling standard DVDs: Nearly 4 million have been sold, bringing the total Avatar home movies sold to 6.7 million.
These numbers only reflect North America, but reports have Avatar doing very well internationally. European figures have not yet been released. The movie debuts in the UK today.
Variety is reporting that the Blu-ray copy is doing so well that 20th Century Fox told reporters that Best Buy had doubled its Blu-ray player sales since the release. Those numbers are unconfirmed, but it does seem to be helping push the HD medium forward, and sales should continue to flourish.
The numbers for Avatar should continue to grow thanks to the home releases, but this is just one of three releases planned. The current disc contains no special features at all, just the movie. A special edition with extra footage, commentary and making of specials is due out in October, and the ultimate 3D edition is due out sometime next year.
So far Avatar has made over $2.1 billion worldwide, as of March.
James Cameron has already confirmed to the LA Times work on Avatar 2, which is planned to be an underwater adventure, and Avatar 3, which will leave the planet and explore Pandora’s solar system.
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